How Does Bad Credit Affect My Spouse?


I owe a lot of money on credit cards. but they are all under my name can my husbands credit get bad if i dont pay the credit cards and can they come after me and take my house? – Adalid



If all of your credit cards are solely in your name, not paying them or defaulting will not affect your husband’s credit score. Many people incorrectly believe that a spouse’s good or bad credit will make their own credit equally good or bad. The only way that not paying on your credit cards will affect your husband’s credit is if he is on your cards as a joint account holder or an authorized signer on the credit cards.

If you don’t pay your credit card bills it can affect you as a couple if you need to get a loan together or a house together as both credit reports will be pulled. A person with bad credit can result in loans with higher interest rates or sometimes even denial of the loan. Your husband would have to apply for everything himself.

To answer the second part of your question, credit card companies do not usually take people’s houses for not paying credit cards. Usually, depending upon the amount of the debt, it is sold to a collection agency which will attempt to collect the debt. Your credit score will drop and you will probably not be extended credit in the future, usually 7 years.

If it is a large amount of debt, the credit company may choose to sue to collect and if they win a judgment, can garnish your wages or levy bank accounts. They may also put a lien upon your house which would mean that if you ever decide to sell your home, you would need to pay the lien before you would receive any money from the sale of the house. In rare circumstances, the creditor can force the sale of the property or liquidation of assets. Although rare, the chance of this happening is higher if the debt is excessive.

Hope this helps.

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2 Responses to “How Does Bad Credit Affect My Spouse?”

  1. Neil Says:


    Just wanted to point out a difference in the UK. Here the credit hisotry of you and your spouse is linked when applying for credit in either name.

  2. Mr Credit Card Says:

    Hey Neil

    Thanks for the tip – guess you really have to be more careful then!!

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